'Safer at Home' order expected in Wisconsin on Tuesday

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Monday Governor Tony Evers announced plans for another major step to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Saying he's issuing a 'Safer at Home' order on Tuesday.

"Isn't something I thought we'd have to do. It's not something that I wanted to do. And it's not something I take lightly, we're all in this together and we need to help stop the spread of COVID-19," said Evers.

Included in the order, all non-essential businesses in Wisconsin will close down.

"In this situation, we know that the general progression of disease in other places has meant that more serious flattening of the curve measures need to happen and the governor really indicated today while it's going to be difficult, we all need to pitch in so that we have fewer people at the same time getting disease," said Eau Claire City-County Health Department Director Lieske Giese.

The order is expected to be signed on Tuesday, but until then it's unknown which businesses will be considered essential or how long the order will last.

Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce President David Minor says many local businesses are preparing for anything.

"It's different. It may not be perfect for everybody, but for those businesses that may not fit the essential category really take a look at how do I send my employees home, how do we deal with it, how do we communicate," said Minor.

While no official word on which businesses will be considered essential in the governor's order, local officials say they expect it to be closely aligned with what Ohio ordered.

That Ohio order lists stores selling groceries, medicine, food and beverage, gas and transportation as essential, among a few others.

Local health officials say this 'Safer at Home' order is a clear indication from the governor that more needs to be done.

"We will be taking this order seriously," said Giese.

This Thursday at 10 a.m. the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a virtual town hall for businesses in the Chippewa Valley.

They have set up a resource page for businesses, to view that click here.